Aug 14, 2011

Conference time

Listening to: waves lapping on the beach.

Reading: The Perfect Husband by Lisa Gardiner

Watching: Still on Master Chef.

Well conference time is here again and I am writing this before I set off to the Australian one. This is the time of year writers look forward to. It's when we come out of hibernation to mix and mingle with like-minded souls. Writing is a lonely job so conferences are essential for all of us. We meet new people, get rejuvenated by the speakers and other people's success stories.

I usually return home with a croaky voice from all the talking and laughing that goes on. There is so much fun to be had. As I struggled to pack my case in preparation for heading out to Melbourne I wondered why I needed so many clothes. But there's the Harlequin dinner, the cocktail party, the Awards dinner, let alone anything else. So my case was large. Of course I was allowing for the books I intend bringing home too.

If I hadn't become a member of RWAustralia and RWNew Zealand I doubt I'd have ever sold. Struggling along writing, totally alone, was not good for the muse. The self-doubt creeps in quicker when you think you're the only one doing this. Writing friends help you pull yourself back up when the rejections come. They make you feel normal on the days you think you've got to be nuts to be a writer. Going to conference only enhances all the good things about being a writer, and I have made some very strong and enduring friendships through attending conferences.

Do you feel attending conference is important for you writing career, published or not?

I'm giving away a copy of Return of the Maverick to someone who answers this question.


  1. I haven't been able yet to attend a writer's conference, but I want to very soon.

    I think it's definitely important for both published and non-published writers to attend them, the published writers to connect with colleagues and the non-published ones to network and get used to the business.

  2. Sue

    I am not a writer but I would imagine that attending a conference would be ideal just the enthusiasm from all the other people there would be really encouraging.

    I belong to The Aust Romance Readers Assoc and love it and we have a convention every 2 years which is a blast and I also attenended RWA at Coogee last year and had such a great time.

    Have Fun

  3. I wholeheartedly recommend writing associations to advance your prospects of being published and help in so many areas after you've sold! Amazing workshops with international savvy guests, wonderful friends, superb food and parties every night!
    It was *so* fun being part of the LoveCats panel this year! Lots of fab questions and books given away!

  4. Hi Sue ~ I'm not an author but I know a bit about conferences. My husband was a salesman for a good number of years. He used to win his way to conferences and always came away fired up. He found it very inspiring to talk to other like minded people and pick their brains. I think the same thing would happen when a bunch of authors got together. Just talking with people in your own profession would give you ideas of what to do and what not to do. I also think you would realize that there are many ways to do the same thing.

  5. Hi Marlena, Helen, Robyn and Kaelee

    I'm finally here. Travelling home from conference turned out to be very difficult as NZ was having the worst weather in decades. I spent a night in Wellington after the airport was closed.
    The Melbourne conference was the best I've attended with a great selection of speakers to listen to, catching up with so many friends, and meeting new people. Awesome, and exhausting. Being on the LoveCats panel was fun too.
    Tomorrow I'm off to the NZ conference - yes, it's that time of the year when we all get together. More good fun ahead.

  6. Marlena, you're the winner of my latest book, Return of the Maverick.
    Can you email your snail mail details at
    lsmackay dot ts dot co do nz

  7. Sue! I'm late to comment but I think conferences are FABULOUS! As Kaelee said for her hubby - I always come away from the conferences fired up with enthusiasm. And there's always one really big EUREKA moment and sometimes there's more than one!

    And it's so lovely to catch up with writing buddies - we're spread far an wide over New Zealand and Australia and even further afield. And terrific to see some of the LoveCats face to face after another 12 months of blogging fun and email chats!


  8. oooo, and I meant to say, CONGRATULATIONS to Marlena for winning Sue's latest!